Dec 10, 2016

Review: Scouts of the Apocalypse: Zombie Plague

Scouts of the Apocalypse: Zombie Plague Scouts of the Apocalypse: Zombie Plague by Michell Plested
My rating: 4 of 5 stars


I was very excited to receive Scouts of the Apocalypse: Zombie Plague by Michell Plested because I have come to enjoy some zombie books, my husband and I are scout leaders, and my son is a Boy Scout after 4.5 years of Cub Scouts. We are a scouting family and I appreciate a book related to something we love to spend our family time together participating in.

First off, as a graphic designer and illustrator with major interest in book cover design, I cringe when I look at the cover. It truly hurts me to see a good book look so unprofessional because of cover art and typography. If the book had not been about scouts I would never have read it, and definitely would not buy it because sadly an unprofessional looking cover many times also means unprofessional writing. I was pleasantly surprised about the writing though.

The actual story was far better than I expected based on the cover. I enjoyed the fact that someone put so much time into a story that honors the dedication of volunteers and scouts. I liked the basic idea of the boys camping, but then coming back to the disaster of a zombie infested real world. After some campo its with our own scouts I can see how that might play out. I also love that the story began as campfire stories told by a leader. I know some boys that would love that. I did find it different that they didn't see more indication of disaster - zombies as they traveled along the way back into civilization. I enjoyed the story, loved the references to real scouting principles, and I love that there is no vulgarity, etc. The book is perfectly acceptable for my son and his scout friends to read.

To me the story ended a little awkwardly, and all volunteer names starting with "scouter" got too repetitive, but I agree with the need to possibly address the boys as "scout" so the reader knows whether it is an adult or a scout who is being addressed. That is a bit repetitive too though ... I don't know about that, but it's definitely something to think about.

Great job of coming up with a story that is interesting for both adults and children. I think with a little help this book could really make a splash with the scouting community. Please get help with that cover. I passed up the book several times because of it as many others will. Books really are initially judged by their cover.

I received Scouts of the Apocalypse: Zombie Plague by Michell Plested free of charge, in order to provide an honest review.


Being a Scout is more than just helping old ladies cross the road. Scouts have a responsibility to their communities and the greater world around them. Part of that responsibility is training and being prepared for disasters. When a Scout troop comes home from a weekend of survival training in the deep woods, they find that nothing about the world they left is the same. Shambling hordes of undead wander the countryside killing anything that lives. Can the Scouts survive the trip home and is there even a home to return to? It will take all of their training and smarts to overcome this disaster.

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Book Tour & GIVEAWAY ~ The Destiny Trilogy Book by Hyeela Lyn

The Destiny Trilogy Book 1
by Hywela Lyn
Genre: Scifi Romance

When Jestine Darnell is rescued from her sabotaged starship by the crew of the Destiny her only objective is to complete her mission and keep her promise to save a world from slavery. Love is the last thing on her mind. However, she has not counted on losing her heart to Kerry Marchant the ship’s second in command, who makes his distrust of her painfully obvious, despite the chemistry between them. The completion of her mission has consequences that neither of them could have foreseen. Enter Dahll Tarron, who becomes involved in a long and dangerous quest to find the Destiny. Fates become intertwined, perils shared, culminating in the realization that sometimes love may be so close that there is a danger it will not be recognized until it is too late…

Children Of The Mist
The Destiny Trilogy Book 2

Two minds united against a common foe. Two hearts afraid to show their love:
Long ago Tamarith fell in love with a man she can never have, and is convinced she will never love another. However, she cannot help but be intrigued by a handsome stranger whose psychic powers exceed even her own.
Vidarh seeks only to find his true purpose in life and to win the regard of his father, who eschews his son’s psychic abilities. Thrown together by a common threat to their planet, then torn apart by an evil greater than any they could have imagined, can Vidarh save the lovely Nifl woman who has captivated him, before it is too late?
Will Tamarith and Vidarh overcome the deadly enemy who threatens to destroy all they know and love? Will they find the happiness they both seek? Or are they fated to live their lives alone?

Beloved Enemy
The Destiny Trilogy Book 3

Cat Kincaid is obsessed with killing the man she believes is responsible for the torture and death of her sister, but when she eventually catches up with him, survival becomes a greater priority than revenge. Kerry Marchant, haunted by memories, regret, and self-blame, shields himself from the pain of the past by committing himself totally to the starship, Destiny, of which he is part owner. However, the beautiful, red-haired woman who reminds him of his lost love, and who he suspects is working for a corrupt regime, represents a possible threat not only to the ship, but to his heart. Marooned on an inhospitable planet, they need to work together to stay alive, fighting not only unknown assailants, but their growing attraction. But how can they learn to trust each other when he has vowed never to get close to a woman again, and she made a solemn pledge to destroy him?

Hywela Lyn spent most of her life in Wales and the beautiful countryside and legends inspired her to write. Although she now lives in a small village in England, she is very proud of her Welsh heritage and background. Her pen name is a combination of her first two names. 'Hywela' is Welsh and her first name but it was never used and she has always been called by her second Christian name, Lyn.
She enjoys weaving romantic tales of the future, and distant, mysterious worlds, stories she hopes will truly take you 'out of this world'and beyond.
She is crazy about all animals, especially horses. She lives with her long suffering husband, Dave, and has an animal family of two horses, a 'feral' stable cat and an adopted terrier called Choccy.
Hywela Lyn's first novel, 'Starquest', a futuristic romance, and a sequel, to 'Starquest', 'Children of the Mist' and 'Beloved Enemy are available in print or Kindle version. They can each be read as a 'stand alone' although together they form the 'Destiny Trilogy.'
Her fantasy novella 'Dancing With Fate' is also available now as an E-book from Smashwords, Kindle, and in print.
She is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association (UK) and Chiltern Writers.

Website * Facebook * Twitter * Blogspot * Wild Rose Press * Amazon * Goodreads

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Dec 4, 2016

Review: If The Creek Don't Rise: A Novel

If The Creek Don't  Rise: A Novel If The Creek Don't Rise: A Novel by Leah Weiss
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

(description below)

I absolutely loved this book. I finished it in a few days anxious to see what would happen next. I loved the array or colorful characters, and that the story was told by several allowing me to get a glimpse of what was going on in their head. Inside some of the character's mind was a pretty crazy and entertaining place to be.

At first I wasn't as into the poor mountain girl messed up and got with an abusive jerk, but as new characters emerged telling about their life and experiences on the mountain I couldn't stop reading. Even the horrible characters shed light on the environment and situations.

Awesome read with an abundance of "mountain people" terminology ... Believable characters (and oh what a character some of the characters are). Heart touching in places, funny, sad, and funny again. I love the ending and did not expect the turn it took.

There was a section of book club / discussion type questions at the end that really would make some great conversation topics. I received this book free for the purpose of providing an honest review.


Book description:

A strikingly sincere portrait of a town and its buried secrets from an outstanding new voice in southern fiction.

In a North Carolina mountain town filled with moonshine and rotten husbands, Sadie Blue is only the latest girl to face a dead-end future at the mercy of a dangerous drunk. She’s been married to Roy Tupkin for fifteen days, and she knows now that she should have listened to the folks who said he was trouble. But when a stranger sweeps in and knocks the world off-kilter for everyone in town, Sadie begins to think there might be more to life than being Roy’s wife.

As stark and magnificent as Appalachia itself, If the Creek Don’t Rise is a bold and beautifully layered debut about a dusty, desperate town finding the inner strength it needs to outrun its demons. The folks of Baines Creek will take you deep into the mountains with heart, honesty, and homegrown grit.

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Dec 3, 2016

This is Not a Werewolf Story by Sandra Evans GIVEAWAY plus

On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

This Is Not a Werewolf StoryThis is Not a Werewolf Story
by Sandra Evans

Middle Grade Fantasy

Hardcover & ebook, 352 pages

July 26th 2016 by Atheneum Books for Young Readers

This is the story of Raul, a boy of few words, fewer friends, and almost no family. He is a loner—but he isn’t lonely. All week long he looks after the younger boys at One Of Our Kind Boarding School while dodging the barbs of terrible Tuffman, the jerk of a gym teacher. 

Like every other kid in the world, he longs for Fridays, but not for the usual reasons. As soon as the other students go home for the weekend, Raul makes his way to a lighthouse deep in the heart of the woods. There he waits for sunset—and the mysterious, marvelous phenomenon that allows him to go home, too. But the woods have secrets . . . and so does Raul. When a new kid arrives at school, they may not stay secret for long.

Sandra Evans is a writer and teacher from the Pacific Northwest. Her forthcoming middle grade novel, This is Not a Werewolf Story (Simon & Schuster July 2016), was inspired by her favorite 12th century French tale, Bisclavret, by Marie de France. Born in Washington state, Sandra spent her childhood on U.S. Navy bases from Florida to Hawaii, and returned to the Northwest as a teenager. Since then, she has lived and traveled in France and Europe, but has never strayed far for long from the Puget Sound region.

Tour Schedule

November 28th: Launch
December 1st: Beck Valley Books
December 2nd: Wishful Endings
December 5th: Falling Leaves
December 7th: Life as Leels
December 9th: 100 Pages A Day
December 11th: Nish Homeschool Blog
December 12th: Grand Finale

Tour Giveaway

A hardcover copy of THIS IS NOT A WEREWOLF STORY by Sandra Evans plus Swag

Open internationally

Ends December 16th

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Grab Our Button!

Sparrow is at the Cubs’ table. When he catches my eye he lifts something up in the air.
“Raul!” he shouts across the room. “Dean Swift says I can keep the bone!”
I give him a thumbs up.
Mary Anne smiles. I feel proud. I’m glad she can see that the little kids like me, at least.
“Tell them,” Sparrow hollers. He waggles his hand at the little boys sitting with him. “They don’t believe me. Tell them it’s a monster that eats PE teachers. Tell them how all I found was some tennis shoes and a whistle,” he says. “And a bone.”
“A human bone?” Little John tilts his head and looks from me to Sparrow.
Sparrows nods solemnly but says, “No. Dean Swift says it was a dog bone.”
Sparrow doesn’t lie. He embellishes. “And, it is very stinky in that tunnel. Like the catbox at my granma’s house.” He crinkles his nose. “Ask Raul. He was there. He said it smells like Mr. Tuffman’s breath.”
The Cubs love it. They laugh and laugh.
Little John points at me. “You should talk more. You’re funny.”
Mary Anne has been following the whole crazy conversation. “Yeah,” she says. “You should talk more.”
I’m so happy I can’t even smile. Mary Anne wants more words from me. Mary Anne.
But then I freeze. I feel someone looking at me. And I know who it is before I even see him. When I look he’s staring at me. Mr. Tuffman.
Maybe he didn’t hear?
His jaw moves. His eyes are small. He didn’t miss a word. And Mr. Tuffman doesn’t want any more.

Nov 22, 2016

Release of Descriptions of Heaven by Randal Eldon Greene

Announcing the release of Randal Eldon Greene's Descriptions of Heaven.

  • Publisher: Harvard Square Editions (November 22, 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 194186127X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1941861271

A linguist, a lake monster, and the looming shadow of deathnews of an unknown creature in the New Bedford Lake coincides with news that Natalia's cancer has returned.

On the shores of the lake in a strange house with many secret doors, Robert and his family must face the fact that Natalia is dying, and there is no hope this time. But they continue on; their son plays by the lakeside, Natalia paints, Robert writes, and all the while the air is thick with dust from a worldwide drought that threatens to come down and coat their little corner of green.

A lament for what is already lost and what is yet to be lost, Descriptions of Heaven leaves only one question to be asked: What's next?

What advance readers are saying:


“Randal Greene masterfully created a character who fights in silence, who faces life with her heart and her feelings out in the open. I loved meeting her, and her last journey seen through her husband’s eyes was beautiful to witness.” —Chocolatenwaffles (extract)

“From the very first pages, I saw the lives of these characters like a shattering mirror.”—eLitere

“Some authors tell great stories with drab prose, and some have striking prose, but no real story. Greene nails both.”—Unbroken Journal

“I loved the author's prose and his style in general. Greene makes poetry of his prose and commands the page. For that reason alone, it was a joy to read.”—The Underground

Currently available in both ebook and paperback at supersmallbook

Nov 9, 2016

Review: The Most Dangerous Place on Earth

The Most Dangerous Place on Earth The Most Dangerous Place on Earth by Lindsey Lee Johnson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book is very gripping and also, disturbing if you have a child in middle school, and have forgotten how absolutely cruel being that age can be for most children. Many children are mean because it is what is expected by the other children, and they join in to keep from being the target themselves, or possibly just do not speak up for someone. Sometimes these harmless humiliations become deadly as in this story.

I hate spoilers, but it becomes apparent that some bullying gets out of hand, and the children involved are all changed from that day forward. This story is so heart breaking, but with such brutal truth of the things so many (most) young people experience for the sake of fitting in, or not getting humiliated themselves. When we allow our own children to abuse other children we aren't doing the any favors, or teach our kids that people with money or nice homes are the only people we will associate with. I can only accept you as a friend if all of my popular friends also accept you, but next thing you know the popular kids have changed their mind again & didn't ant you even though you dropped your real friends, or you no longer live in a nice house, or you don't have as much money so now you aren't good enough ... Exactly the way you treated another person.

I think books like this should be required reading for middle - high schoolers because the way you treat people DOES matter and no child needs to think they are above any other because of their money, popularity or any other reason. Sadly many children actually learn to be this way from their parents, but many know right and wrong but are just afraid of not being popular.

Gosh can't we all recall the cruelty, and how mean kids can be. Some kids can just shake it off better than others, but the actual abuses are still not right nor acceptable as adults nor in a workplace. Many children aren't even asked to not constantly belittle others because of who their parents are, or maybe they are so popular the football or basketball team can't make it without them.

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Sep 14, 2016

Review: An Idiot in Love: A Novel

An Idiot in Love: A Novel An Idiot in Love: A Novel by David Jester
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Review: (Book Description after the review)

I really loved the humor and awkward situations Kieran continued to find himself in as he searched for someone, something? An Idiot In Love by David Jester was a wild ride through Kieran's live life beginning with his first kiss and going through things many of us might can relate to (some not so much, but still a bit funny).

The story was more lighthearted and funny in the child and teen "awkward" years of sex & love. Funny stories, and awkward situations that most of us know someone who might have had a similar horrid thing happen.

Towards the end of the book I did become less entertained, and even a little hopeless for Kieran's clueless state that ideally should have changed and not gotten quite as desperate. I feared the book was about to take an even worse turn (worse than mental health faking even?!?).

I always hate "spoilers" but it's iften hard to explain your opinion without them. Let's just say hilarious kid, funny awkward teen & early adult relationships progress to desperation that could have been avoided at times with some speaking up, then to complete desperation I was worried was going to end very badly BUT the endo g was good and I enjoyed the journey.

I received this book from Skyhorse Publushing for the purpose of providing an honest review.

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"Raw, raunchy, laugh-out-loud funny, and surprisingly affecting, An Idiot In Love is a deeply relatable page-turner. The honesty, candor, and humor of David Jester's prose is something to be admired and enjoyed. I loved this book!" —Davy Rothbart, author of My Heart is an Idiot and creator of FOUND magazine

Kieran’s love life didn’t get off to a good start. He threw up after his first kiss; he was beaten up by the first girl to have a crush on him; and after a mix-up with his first love letter, he could only sit back and watch as the entire school mistook him for a brutal murderer. By the time the hormones kicked in, Kieran had all but given up on love, but the worst was yet to come.

Relying on advice from friends who are just as dumb and just as clueless, Kieran weaves a stuttering, stumbling path through the world of adult dating. He lacks decorum, charisma, confidence—everything he needs to succeed. Despite that, there is one girl who changes him, one girl who eases his nerves and gives him hope. She is everything he had hoped for: beautiful, generous, funny—and she didn’t turn tail and run when she first saw him. But then, she disappears. Will Kieran find her again? And if he does, can his luck hold long enough to make a relationship with her last? What are the chances that all the mishaps and misadventures that go before, between, and after will put him off dating for good?

An Idiot in Love chronicles a series of unfortunate sexual encounters and relationships that every reader can appreciate and sympathize with.

Aug 27, 2016

GRAND FINALE BLITZ: Carousel Nights by Amie Denman (Harlequin Heartwarming)

On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

Book Tour Grand Finalefor

Carousel Nights
By Amie Denman

We hope you enjoyed some amusement park magic and learning more about June and Mel's story. 

Don't forget to grab a copy of the first book in the series while it's on sale!

If you missed any of the stops, go back and check them out now...

Launch - The Starlight Point Stories

When I was a college student, I escaped textbooks and spent my summer days working at an amusement park. My experience four summers in a row became the inspiration for Starlight Point Stories published by Harlequin Heartwarming.

I Am A Reader - Summer Love

Have you ever fallen in love in the summer? I fall in love with summer every year, but I actually fell in love during summer when I worked at a seasonal resort and amusement park much like the fictional Starlight Point in my Harlequin Heartwarming series. In case you’re one of those people who likes to skip to the happy ending, I’ll let you off the hook right now. I’m still in love with the same man more than twenty years later.

Wishful Endings - Excerpt

Mel felt the air change the moment her gaze swung to him. He wasn’t foolish enough to think she brightened because of any reason except one: he was key to getting things done around Starlight Point. And she had a project in mind.

Hardcover Feedback - Review

"All in all, this was a great read. Perfect for a day at the beach, relaxing by the pool, or anytime really. I definitely recommend the book to any fan of contemporary romantic fiction."

Katie's Clean Book Collection - Sisters

If you have siblings, you know how much they contribute to shaping you as a person. I have three sisters with whom I’ve always been close, and I know that they have influenced me—almost always in a good way! The four of us even have a vague pact to end up in a bungalow in Key West together someday to raise a margarita glass to our gray hairs. My Starlight Point series focuses on romance, of course, but the relationship between the three siblings who inherit an amusement park is also close to my heart.

underneath the covers - Excerpt

"Mel’s familiar scent—Dial soap mixed with a little bit of sweat and motor oil—tingled her senses even with a hundred other distractions. Of course he was hard to ignore. He was standing so close their clothing touched."

Book Lover in Florida - Excerpt

Having a good partner made a difference the size of the peninsula Starlight Point sat on. June was light and graceful, her love for the movement clear in every step and sway. Leading her as a dance partner was like being behind the wheel of a Ferrari. The only way he could go wrong was if he lost control.

EskieMama Reads - Promo

Harlie's Books - Review

"All that makes for a great story. June and Mel were getting a second chance at love but some really big decisions needed to be made? Did I have my doubts? Nope, I knew that Ms. Denman wouldn’t do that to me. 😉 She wrote a heartwarming book that had the characters, emotional depth, and an amusement park. And dancing. 🙂"

Reading Is My SuperPower - Review

"Carousel Nights is fun and sweet and swoonworthy with some really great kisses and a really great setting. The chemistry between Mel and June is one that comes from years of knowing each other, from years of being in love, and yet it feels new and electric. The tension of running an amusement park – the crackle of the radio signaling another breakdown or emergency – keeps the action high and the pace steady."

Christy's Cozy Corners - Review

"I love this story and these characters! There is so much life in this book. The romance develops quickly but not in an unrealistic way since June and Mel have known each other forever. You will love reading this story! It is so sweet and heartwarming. I highly recommend it!"

With Love for Books - Review

"Amie Denman has chosen a fantastic setting for her series. She brings Starlight Point to life with vivid descriptions of the park itself and the plans to make it successful again. I fell in love with the place straight away. Amie Denman's writing flows easily and it was fun to read about the rides and everyone's response to them. It feels like the main characters really belong in the amusement park, which is something I loved about Carousel Nights. I also liked the sweet romance very much and highly recommend this lovely book."

Bookworm Lisa - Starlight Point Amusement Park

In Carousel Nights, you’ll meet June Hamilton. She shares ownership of the family amusement park Starlight Point with her brother and her sister. Only twenty-five, she does not plan to settle in and devote her life to roller coasters, cotton candy, and the beach resort. She wants to keep dancing on Broadway, but she comes home for the summer to lend her talent to the live shows at Starlight Point.

Thoughts of a Blonde - Review

"5 STARS! Feels like a homecoming when you read a book that portrays such a sweet reunion!"

And don't forget to nominate Amie's book on KindleScout!

Carousel Nights (Starlight Point Stories)Carousel Nights
(Starlight Point Stories #2)

by Amie Denman
Adult Contemporary Romance
Mass Market Paperback & ebook, 384 pages
August 1st 2016 by Harlequin Heartwarming

Every first love deserves a second chance

June Hamilton left home to pursue her dream of dancing on Broadway. Seven years later, she has one regret: Mel Preston, her teenage crush and onetime summer love. Now a single dad and the head of maintenance at Starlight Point, her family's amusement park, Mel's easy smile still makes her heart beat in triple time. But June came home with a plan. She would spend the summer revitalizing the park's aging theaters, then make a graceful exit back to the big city. Until Mel and his young son start making a powerful claim on her emotions, and June faces an impossible decision…

GoodreadsAmazonBarnes & NobleHarlequiniTunesKobo

Other Books in the Series

Under the BoardwalkUnder the Boardwalk
(Starlight Point Stories #2)

by Amie Denman
Adult Contemporary Romance
Mass Market Paperback & ebook, 384 pages
January 1st 2016 by Harlequin Heartwarming

Everyone's counting on him

With the sudden death of his father, Jack Hamilton finds himself running the family amusement park, Starlight Point. His first job? Balance the books, and that means raising the rent for vendors like baker Augusta Murphy.

Gus won't accept the new contract…not without a fight. She rallies the other vendors and sets out to negotiate with Jack. At least, she tries. How do you play hardball with a man who's charming and kind and still grieving? Gus needs to figure it out fast, because the closer she gets to Jack, the more she risks losing everything.

Amie Denman lives in Ohio with her husband, sons, cats, and dog. When she's not reading or writing, she enjoys walking and playing outside. Born with an overdeveloped sense of curiosity, she's been known to chase fire trucks on her bicycle just to see what's going on. Amie believes that everything is fun: especially roller coasters, wedding cake, and falling in love.

Tour Giveaway

10 copies of the first book in the series, Under the Boardwalk (print if US, ebook if outside the US)
Open internationally

Ends September 2nd
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